Tuesday, January 16, 2018

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Expansion of Dunn County dairy farm moves forward

» Committee approves rezoning request  » Special exception still needed by CAFO

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    The Dunn County Planning, Resources and Development Committee approved rezoning about 100 acres to support an expansion at Denmark Dairy. The dairy is located on Highway B near Highway BB in rural Colfax. The rezoning goes to the Dunn County Board for consideration next month.

    Staff photo by Pamela Powers
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MENOMONIE — A Dunn County committee on Tuesday recommended 100 acres be rezoned to expand a rural Colfax dairy by more than 1,000 cows.

The Planning, Resources and Development Committee on a voice vote supported the rezoning for Denmark Dairy. The land would be rezoned from general agriculture to intensive agriculture. 

The rezoning will need approval from the Dunn County Board next month. If the land is rezoned, Denmark Dairy still would need to get a special exception from the county’s Board of Adjustment for the expansion of the concentrated animal feeding operation.

Denmark Dairy, on Highway B near Highway BB in rural Colfax, has about 1,300 milking cows and wants to expand to about 2,400 milking cows and build a rotary milking facility. The expansion would occur over four to eight years.

Committee members reached the decision after Denmark Dairy removed from the request about 20 acres of a 40-acre parcel near Sinking Creek.

Karl Kragness, who spoke on behalf of the dairy, said the family-owned business was willing to compromise and seek less acreage to be put in intensive agriculture zoning.

“I take a lot of pride in this industry,” Kragness said. “I want to do this right.”

“It’s a good plan,” committee member Gary Bjork said. “I think we should accept that.”

Committee member Mike Kneer said his concern with rezoning the northern 40 acres is that the future is unknown. However, if Denmark Dairy needed the land in intensive agriculture in the future, the dairy could reapply.

Land owned by Dennis and Mary Kragness, who also own the dairy and are Karl Kragness’ parents, also would have to be changed to Denmark Dairy’s name.

Contact: 715-556-9018, pamela.powers@ecpc.com, @MenomonieBureau on Twitter


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